Other than reading the headline may suggest, no, I don’t want to artificially increase my number of Twitter followers. But I often get asked which way is the best to approach me with your project pitch. As I was thinking about it, I noticed that many of the conversations I have had over the years started like the one I just finished an hour or so ago.
It was a very interesting Skype call with Matthew Burr, one of the co-founders of Nomadic.fm. How did he manage to get ahead on the list of people I want to talk to? The answer is simple: he just followed me on Twitter. As a side note: Nomadic.fm is now my favorite startup of 2013 so far.
So here is the deal. I get tons of pitches via email every day, either via this blog, EDUKWEST or my position as Innovation Editor at Today’s Campus. Most of these pitches are non-personal, you know the ones written by PR folks and though I’m scanning them (in a rather superficial manner) everyday I have to say that maybe 1% of them actually get an answer from me.
Mixed in between are personal emails from “real” founders who take the time and think about how to approach me best. I really appreciate these efforts and try to get back to them as soon as possible, but I have to admit that due to the sheer number of emails in my inbox they often get buried like alpinists in an avalanche at Mount Everest. Which means, yes, they die a cold and lonely death unless the founder gives me another sign of life like sending a follow up email. A good example for this is Pranav Piyush of Padlet (formerly Wallwisher). He sent me like four emails which signaled that he really wanted to have that talk.
But here is the thing. Everyday I check out all the new followers I get on Twitter. I take the time to read their bios, click on the links and if the project looks interesting to me I tend to dig deeper immediately.
Thinking back about how I first got in touch with individuals or startups I still am in contact with today, I noticed that most of these relationships started this way on Twitter. I think it is in my nature to explore things on my own at my own pace so all I need is kind of a quick reminder or in this case initiator to get this process started. As Twitter is such an essential part of my daily routine it is guaranteed that I will check you out when you follow me on Twitter.
Of course, your profile needs to be filled out completely with picture, bio and link in order to spark my interest. If then your project also is up my alley you will get an invite to chat pretty quickly and that usually also happens via Twitter.